4 Unlawful Examples of White-Collar Crime

Only 3% of federal prosecutions are from white-collar crime, but that doesn’t mean it’s uncommon. Many people never get caught, especially when the crime targets low-income people.

White collar crime is a non-violent crime, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t destructive. Anyone who’s a victim of an example of white-collar crime could tell you it’s destructive.

We’re here to talk about four common examples of white-collar crime so you can stay informed. Read on to learn more.

1. Wage Theft

Wage theft is one of the most common forms of crime and not just white-collar crime. It’s also one of the most destructive as it usually targets people who are already not earning enough income.

Wage theft varies depending on the industry, but overall, it’s when an employer is somehow taking money away from employees. It includes things like:

  • Taking employee tips
  • Not paying for work
  • Under-paying for work (paying under the minimum wage)
  • Not allowing break time
  • Not paying overtime

Many employees aren’t aware that wage theft is a criminal offense. As a matter of fact, depending on how significant the theft was, it could also be considered a felony.

Employers often think they can afford to eat the criminal defense lawyer cost if it means they take more money from their employees, but this isn’t always the case.

2. Money Laundering

Money laundering is another common type of white-collar crime. It’s when someone takes a significant sum of money that comes from an illegal source (such as dealing drugs) and makes it look legitimate.

The “laundering” is what makes “dirty” money “clean.”

It’s difficult to prove that money was laundered. People often launder money by turning it into real estate, cryptocurrency, art, or precious metals.

3. Identity Theft

One of the most destructive types of white-collar crime is identity theft. This can be life-altering.

This happens when one person assumes the identity of another for financial gain. No, this person isn’t literally disguising themselves. They’re taking their information (like their social security number and bank account number) and using it to open credit cards, open bank accounts, and more.

Many people aren’t aware that they’ve been the victim of identity theft until they’re in serious trouble already. It can ruin someone’s credit score and leave them in financial ruin.

4. Fraud

Fraud is an umbrella term. It’s when someone uses deception for financial gain. The FBI generally uses “fraud” to refer to this deception being perpetrated by large organizations rather than individuals, but anyone can commit fraud.

Corporate fraud includes things like insider trading and the falsification of financial information.

There’s also bankruptcy fraud. This is when someone hides assets after filing for bankruptcy to keep those assets away from creditors.

Have You Experienced an Example of White-Collar Crime?

If you think you’ve encountered an example of white-collar crime, it might be time to hire a lawyer. If you’ve perpetrated one, and you think you’re in trouble, a criminal defense lawyer may be able to reduce your criminal charges and guide you through the complicated legal process.

White-collar crime might be non-violent, but it’s still dangerous.

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